As a parent, you never stop worrying about your child’s health and well being. Fortunately, there are new medical advancements being made every day that are improving the outlook for children living with chronic medical conditions and decreasing the risk that others will fall victim. Unfortunately, children are not immune to life’s illnesses and are often more at risk because of their underdeveloped immune systems.
Here are three medical advances that have been made in recent years to protect the health of children:
Cord Blood Banking
Until the 1970s, the placenta and umbilical cord were discarded after the birth of a baby. Today, parents can opt to collect and store the blood from the umbilical cord. It can be used as effective treatment options for childhood cancer, blood disease and immune disorders because of the unique nature of the blood.
Umbilical cord blood is rich in blood-forming stem cells that are found in bone marrow. It may also have the potential to raise other cells in the body and is capable of developing all three types of mature blood cells, including red cells, white cells and platelets. While a beneficial treatment option, you must make the decision to bank your child’s blood before he or she is born.
Vaccinations may not be new, but the research surrounding them is. There has been a heightened sense of awareness – and fear – when it comes to having children vaccinated because of the supposed link between immunizations and autism. However, these studies have been discredited, and some were even found to be fraudulent.
Not only should parents follow the standard immunization schedule, but also they should take advantage of newer immunizations such as Gardasil, a vaccine for preventing the HPV virus in both boys and girls. The side effects for immunizations, most of which are rare, are far less severe than the suffering and pain children will go through if affected with a childhood disease.
In 2011, Bisphenol-A or BPA was removed from baby bottles and many baby products. Studies show that this chemical agent may cause harm to the reproductive and nervous systems, especially in young children since they are underdeveloped. Some scientists fear that long-term exposure to BPA can cause cancer and other diseases.
Fortunately, we made headway by having BPA removed from baby bottles, but it’s still being used in other products. It’s important to evaluate the products that your children are using, including canned foods and water bottles, and opt for products that say BPA-free on their packaging.
When it comes to keeping our kids safe, you can never use too much precaution. Our jobs as parents is to keep them safe, and if that means taking the extra time to choose the right products or consider further medical options, then so be it.